This post discusses SSDI/SSI for Muscular Dystrophy. If you or someone you care for is unable to work due to Muscular Dystrophy read on for how SSA will evaluate your claim for disability benefits.

Muscular dystrophy is a group of genetic (inherited) diseases in which muscle fibers are unusually susceptible to damage. Muscles continue to weaken until you are unable to use them. Muscles not only enable the human body to move, they also determine blood flow, breathing, digestion and other important body functions.

There are more than 30 different kinds of muscular dystrophy. Some forms start in childhood while others do not begin until adulthood. Via The Mayo Clinic. The most common forms are: Duchenne (DMD – the most common form in children), Becker, Myotonic (the most common form in adults), Congenital, Emery-Dreifuss, Facioscapulohumeral (FSHD), Limb-girdle, Distal and Oculopharyngeal. Via NIH.

Myotonic (also called MMD or Steinert’s disease) affects at least 1 in 8,000 people worldwide. People with this disorder often have prolonged muscle contractions (myotonia) and are not able to relax certain muscles after use. Clouding of the lens of the eye (cataracts), abnormalities of the electrical signals that control the heartbeat (cardiac conduction defects), early balding and an inability to father a child (infertility) are also symptoms.  The severity of the condition varies widely among affected people, even among members of the same family. Via NIH.

Myotonic dystrophy is diagnosed by a neurologist. Various forms of testing are used to make a diagnosis: family history, blood work, physical examination, EMGs or muscle biopsy. Treatment can include medications, physical rehabilitation or splints/orthotics. There is no cure or specific treatment for myotonic dystrophy. Via John Hopkins.

The Social Security Administration evaluates claims for Muscular Dystrophy under 11.13. This listing requires significant and persistent disorganization of motor function in two extremities, resulting in sustained disturbance of gross and dexterous movements, or gait and station. In simple terms, you must have lost the use of two hands or two legs, or one hand and one leg.  If you are unable to walk without a cane (or walker) or you are unable to use your hands to perform tasks such as writing, opening door knobs or grasping, you may meet this listing. In addition, Fukuyama Congenital Muscular Dystrophy is also on the Compassionate Allowance List.

You may not meet the above listing but are still unable to work due to your Muscular Dystrophy (most listings are difficult to meet). Muscular Dystrophy can affect other areas, such as your ability to speak, balance or see. If you have been assessed with Muscular Dystrophy and are unable to work, you should file your claim for SSDI/SSI as soon as possible. The Bishop Law Firm represents clients in Raleigh, Cary, Durham and surrounding areas in North Carolina. Give us a call today for a free case evaluation!

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